Isabel Taylor is the latest recipient of the Boston Post Cane. At 101 years old, she is the oldest living person in Windham. She was honored on Friday by town clerk Linda Morrell, with her daughter and son and their spouses in attendance.
The Boston Post Cane is a tradition that began in 1909. Canes were given to 431 towns in the State of Maine to be awarded to their oldest citizens. When the holder passes, the cane is given to the next in line. The cane that is now passed along in Windham is a replica. There is also a display holder for the cane, which moves from person to person. The original is on display in the town hall with the name of each person who has held the cane engraved on a plaque.
Taylor, born in July of 1914, doesn’t like a lot of attention. She sat and admired the certificate and cane and waited patiently for her picture to be taken.
“I can’t possibly be the oldest,” she said. “I can’t see any reason for it.”
Taylor moved to Windham in 1951, when she and her husband bought a farm on Route 302 and moved there with their four children. She taught in Windham at Arlington School and Manchester School until she retired in 1975 after 24 years of teaching.
“I loved to teach,” she said.
Taylor was a long time member of the Crossroads Garden Club and the Windham Historical Society. She loves time with her family, walks to the mailbox and watching the birds outside her window.
“I never expected to be this age. I do pretty well,” she said. “I probably eat too much.” She admitted that she likes breakfast and her children said she also likes ice cream.
Her children are Barbara Taylor from Massachusetts, Elaine Libby from Windham, Alberta Peavey from Massachusetts and John Jr., who helps care for her, also lives in Windham. Taylor has six grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren.
When Taylor was told her would be getting the award, she told her children that “she didn’t really need a cane.”
She still lives in her own home. For her 100th birthday she was given children’s books that she donated to the Windham Public Library.
If any of her former students or friends would like to send a congratulations card to Taylor it can be sent to Isabel Taylor, 10 Taylor Lane, Windham, Maine 04062.